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Poster: Administrator, Curator, or StaffVideo-Cellar Date: Aug 23, 2011 3:33am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Long John Silver Removed due to Claim

I'd suggest having a look at how GATT/URAA restoration works and how a film becomes ineligible for such restoration. The Copyright Office's brochure is available here.

You should also note that the filing of a NIE or GATT/URAA registration does not signify a determination by the copyright office that the work is eligible for copyright restoration or that such registration is a valid claim, only that the claim has been made and filed.

When you understand how GATT/URAA restoration works, you might want to take into account that:
This film is a US production, made in Australia, but with no authors who were Australian citizens:
-Byron Haskin (directer) was a US citizen
-Martin Rackin and Joe Kaufman (producers) were US citizens
-Mark Evans (writer) was a US citizen
-David Buttolph (composer)was a US citizen
-Carl Guthrie (photographer) was a US citizen
Consequently, under the Australian "Copyright Act", the film is not treated as an Australian work for copyright purposes, but as a US work. Under the Australian "Copyright (International Protections) Regulations" the film would have been offered the shorter term of the US or Australian copyright term.
The film was registered for copyright in the US as follows:
LONG JOHN SILVER. Treasure Island Pictures
Pty., Australia. Released in the U. S.
by Distributors Corp. of America. 12 reels,
sd., color, 35mm. Eastman color. Based
on a character created by Robert Louis
Stevenson. Treasure Island Pictures
Pty., Ltd.; 21Dec54; LP4657.

In other words, it was registered as a published work in the US with a publication date of 21 December 1954. The film was first shown in Sydney on 16 December 1954. 21 December 1954 falls within the 30 day period for which a possibly "foreign" work becomes ineligible for GATT/URAA restoration.
The film's copyright was not renewed between 1 January 1982 and 31 December 1982 and it consequently entered the public domain in the US and Australia (under the rule of the shorter term) on 1 January 1983.
Because of the film's public domain status in Australia at 1 January 1995, as well as its lack of foreign national authors and the proximity of its registered US publication date to it's Australia publication date, the film was ineligible for copyright restoration. As such, the 2004 restoration registration on file at the USCO would probably not stand up to judicial scrutiny.

I don't know what you paid for your license or what advice you were given regarding the validity of the GATT/URAA claim, but as you say, live and learn.


This post was modified by Video-Cellar on 2011-08-23 10:31:57

This post was modified by Video-Cellar on 2011-08-23 10:33:02

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Poster: 79magnum Date: Aug 23, 2011 2:33pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Long John Silver Removed due to Claim


While you wish to go on about what you believe, here is the fact:

Public Catalog
Copyright Catalog (1978 to present)

Search Request: Left Anchored Title = Long John Silver
Search Results: Displaying 1 of 8 entries



Long John Silver.
Type of Work:
Motion Picture
Registration Number / Date:
PA0001292202 / 2004-07-15
Title:
Long John Silver.
Description:
Videocassette ; 1/2 in.
Copyright Claimant:
Kim Newton
Date of Publication:
1954
Authorship on Application:
motion picture: Robert Newton, -1956.
Copyright Note:
C.O. correspondence.

Reg. under GATT/URAA restoration.

Cataloged from appl. only.


Names:
Newton, Kim

Newton, Robert, -1956

As to the credibility of the agent who we negotiated the rights to this film with, I offer you this link:

http://www.cmgworldwide.com/corporate/clients.html




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Poster: Administrator, Curator, or StaffVideo-Cellar Date: Aug 23, 2011 11:50pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Long John Silver Removed due to Claim

While I have no doubt of the credibility of the agent, the existence of a GATT/URAA restoration registration has no bearing of the film's ineligibility for such copyright restoration. The facts I presented (not beliefs, FACTS) mean that the film remains, unquestionably in the public domain. As representitive of Robert Newton's publicity rights, CMG has every right to license his likeness and image for the next 15 years, however, it should always be remebered that such publicity and trade mark rights never apply to public domain works, under federal law.

The restoration registration you have supplied is marked C.O Correspondence. This usually means that there is some doubt as to the validity of the claim and the Copyright Office has written to the claimant seeking clarification. The copyright office still files the registration but may not stand by it if the matter came to court and they were presented with the true facts about the films status.

You may have an agreement with the authorised representitive of the star of the film's estate, however, your claim to copyright on the film would most probably fail if it were to be tested in court.

The qualifications for GATT/URAA restorations are intended to stop organisations using the legisilation as a work-around to re-copyrighting expired US works that were simply made in a foreign country and were not genuine foreign works. The exclusion of a film like "Long John Silver" from copyright restoration would be right and proper and within the spirit of the legislation.

This post was modified by Video-Cellar on 2011-08-24 06:50:30

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Poster: 79magnum Date: Aug 24, 2011 10:25am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Long John Silver Removed due to Claim

The C.O Correspondence had nothing to do with the copyright claim. It was in regards to the original film footage on file.

We do not claim to own the copyright. That is owned by Kim Newton. We have the distribution rights to this film. Any questions you have regarding the validity of this copyright claim should be addressed to Mr. Newton or the Library of Congress. Attacking us for requesting our rights to be honored as the copyright currently stands, is confusing to us at best.

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Poster: Administrator, Curator, or StaffVideo-Cellar Date: Aug 24, 2011 2:11pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Long John Silver Removed due to Claim

Firstly, as the copyright currently stands this film is public domain, and has remained so for nearly 30 years, because it clearly does not qualify for GATT/URAA restoration. The onus is always of the copyright claimant to prove their claim when it comes to restoration.

Secondly, if you have simply only liceneced the distribution and do not actaully have license of the so called "copyright" you have very limited access to DMCA, firstly because you are not the copyright owner and secondly becuse the film is, in reality, not protected by copyright.

I would suggest you should get legal advice based on the facts about this film. If you are going to lodge numerous DMCAs on this public domain film you may eventually end up in a court action (there are provisions in the DMCA to protect "content users" from such action by "rights holders".) In that case, YOU will have to prove YOUR claim. YOU are making the DMCA claim not Kim Newton or CMG.

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Poster: 79magnum Date: Aug 24, 2011 2:45pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Long John Silver Removed due to Claim

Your continued denial of something we have shown you to be correct, is something we will not continue to debate.

Any concerns or questions you may have should be directed to the Library of Congress or you may feel free to contact the legal staff at CMG.

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Poster: Administrator, Curator, or StaffVideo-Cellar Date: Aug 24, 2011 3:25pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Long John Silver Removed due to Claim

It is not denial. The facts on this film mean that that registration, while dutily filed by the USCO, is invalid and holds no legal weight. As claimant it is your responsibility to prove your rights. You have not done so. I would urge the uploader to lodge a counter notice and to contact the usual channels, the EFF, etc about possible challenges to the restoration registration.